Statewide Delivery Service 2021 Transition Updates Archive

The following updates were originally posted on the Statewide Delivery Service webpage.

August 6, 2021

The State Library of Ohio, DAS, and OhioLINK convened an urgent meeting with STAT to increase pressure on the remediation of recurring issues now that we are more than a month into the contract. This service is being scrutinized and our efforts supported by the highest state government levels possible. As you will see in today’s update, service improvements are progressing, and the number of helpdesk tickets are starting to decline.

The chart below shows a gradual increase in delivered materials for SEO member libraries. This is not by any means yet an acceptable level of service.

Route and hub updates:

  • STAT has hired sorters and additional staff at the Cleveland hub.
  • The SEO service center will be used as a hub for Southeast Ohio starting next week.
  • STAT’s president, corporate director of operations and operations supervisor have been working in Ohio at various times throughout the life of the contract.

Supply update:

  • STAT received 700 totes that are being sent to the Columbus hub for distribution.
  • The State Library will place an order for 1000 zipper bags and 1000 totes.
  • If you are low on any supplies, please complete the customer service form, or email the delivery listserv or delivery@library.ohio.gov.

Materials update:

  • If you have items that went into transit before June 25, please submit a claim with Priority by emailing Jamie Pardee or Mike Campbell.

Helpdesk tickets update:

  • State Library and OhioLINK combined tickets for the week of 7/31 – 237
  • State Library and OhioLINK combined tickets for the week of 7/24 – 280
  • State Library and OhioLINK combined tickets for the week of 7/17 – 322
  • State Library and OhioLINK combined tickets for the week of 7/8 – 289
  • State Library and OhioLINK combined tickets for the week of 7/1 – 125

Line chart showing a gradual increase in delivered materials for SEO member libraries.

 


August 3, 2021

In addition to today’s update (below), be assured that the State Library of Ohio and OhioLINK are steadfastly working to ensure the vendor of this vital service meets all contractual obligations and the patrons of the libraries in Ohio are getting the materials they need as quickly as possible.

STAT Courier delivery service update 8/3:

Route and hub updates:

  • STAT is adding 1,500 sq. ft. of warehouse space in Cleveland.
  • Cleveland has four new routes added with two new drivers starting this week and two more next week.
  • STAT is adding 200 sq. ft. of space in Toledo.
  • STAT has rented a truck to run routes in Toledo for the next four weeks until a permanent driver is hired.

Supply update:

  • STAT has ordered 1,500 totes and will distribute them to stops throughout the system. Please continue to use bags as you have been.
  • Please make sure you are using the correct labels (current STAT delivery labels, not Priority labels that have a barcode). This will prevent further delays in delivery.

Please continue to let us know about missed stops and other issues – we are using the information you provide to help STAT Courier bring the delivery service up to the level that we all expect.

As always, report delivery issues here: https://library.ohio.gov/services-for-libraries/statewide-delivery/statewide-delivery-customer-service/.

The next meeting with STAT will be on Thursday, Aug 5.


July 30, 2021 (updates as of 7/29/21)

Routes and hubs update:

  • Hubs are in Cleveland, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Toledo, and Akron. A hub in Cambridge will be in service when STAT is able to fill staff position(s) in that area.
  • Route numbers and hubs are on the labels. For example, AKR 20-07 is on Akron’s Route 20. The route numbers do not repeat across the hubs. We are waiting for an updated manifest from STAT and recommend libraries suspend using the current manifest for finding route numbers.
  • Route 5 now has two drivers out of Columbus. This route will be out of Columbus until as noted above, STAT can hire staff in the Cambridge area.
  • Route 14 out of Toledo has been re-routed to complete all the stops on time.
  • Backlog out of Columbus has been cleared 50% and is out for distribution.
  • Columbus hub is now fully staffed.
  • Akron Route 21 is running completely.
  • STAT is monitoring the volume at the Cleveland hub to assess the warehouse space needed going forward.

Labels & Supplies

  • It is imperative that libraries use the correct labels (current STAT delivery labels, not Priority labels that have a barcode). This will prevent further delays in delivery.
  • The State Library ordered and received 2000 new canvas bags that are available upon request via the customer service form or emailing delivery@library.ohio.gov.
  • We anticipate ordering additional zippered bags soon.

Please keep letting us know about missed stops and other issues – we are using the information you provide to help STAT Courier bring the delivery service up to the level that we all expect. Our goal is to streamline the organization of reported issues; therefore, we have updated the customer service form to allow you to choose a more specific request type. This will enable us to improve monitoring, compliance, and accountability of the service going forward. You can find the form here: https://library.ohio.gov/services-for-libraries/statewide-delivery/statewide-delivery-customer-service/.

The next meeting with STAT will be on Monday, August 2.


July 27, 2021

Route and hub updates:
Note: Route numbers may be found on the statewide delivery manifest under the Delivery Resources tab. This is a list of every public library stop’s hub and route ID. Like the labels, the first number in the route ID is the route number.

  • Columbus hub has a large volume of materials sorted into bins and staged for distribution. Item backlog meant for the other hubs is expected to be sent by the end of the week — 20% has been sent as of 7/26. Backlog from other hubs have been cleared and have arrived at Columbus for sorting.
  • New drivers started on Routes 5 and 18.
  • Route 6 is upgrading from a cargo van to a box truck this week.
  • Routes 17 and 19 are running completely every day.
  • Driver on Route 14 didn’t have a large enough vehicle for the volume and was unable to start on 7/26. Driver from Route 12 ran this route on 7/26. A driver is being brought in from St. Louis to cover route 14, so both 12 and 14 will be covered.

Supply update and information:

  • Libraries that are using cardboard boxes for shipping should continue to do so until all the totes can be delivered. STAT received additional totes this week and will be distributing them at a later date.
  • Please make sure you are using the correct labels (current STAT delivery labels, not Priority labels that have a barcode). This will prevent further delays in delivery.
  • As STAT Courier adjusts routes, the labels will be updated. We will send an update with a list of labels that have changed and need reprinted.

Please keep letting us know about missed stops and other issues – we are using the information you provide to help STAT Courier bring the delivery service up to the level that we all expect.

As always, report delivery issues here: https://library.ohio.gov/services-for-libraries/statewide-delivery/statewide-delivery-customer-service/.

The next meeting with STAT Courier will be on Thursday, July 29. An update will be sent on Friday.

July 22, 2021

Route and hub improvements:

  • Dayton-area routes have been running largely without disruption.
  • Two additional routes have been added in Cleveland to accommodate volume.
  • Routes 8, 9, 10, 11 in Cleveland will be running with additional trucks deployed as the routes were not getting completed in time before library closings.
  • Route 5 in Cambridge area now has two trucks running to ensure route is completed.
  • Route 6 in Cambridge area will be adding a truck to handle volume.
  • Route 2 in Cincinnati now has a permanent driver.
  • Temporary drivers for Toledo routes have started this week to cover missed stops until there is a permanent driver.
  • Cleveland hub now has a dedicated warehouse for sorting. STAT is in the process of sorting and labeling old boxes and making progress on getting these items back out for delivery.

Supply update:

  • STAT received more totes early this week and will be delivering them soon. They are continuing to evaluate the number of totes needed per stop.

Additional Information & Reminders:

  • Please do not zip tie a tote unless all items inside are going to one location.
  • Labels on sealed totes must be placed on the side of the tote to allow sorters and drivers to easily identify its destination.
  • Please use the correct labels (current STAT delivery labels, not Priority labels that have a barcode). This will prevent further delays in delivery.
  • As STAT Courier adjusts routes, the labels will  be updated. We will send an update on the delivery listserv with a list of labels that have changed and need reprinted.

We recognize that some delivery issues continue. Please be assured that we are doing everything we can to resolve delays as fast as possible.

Please continue to let us know about missed stops and other issues – we are using the information you provide to help STAT Courier bring the delivery service up to the level that we all expect.

As always, report delivery issues here: library.ohio.gov/services-for-libraries/statewide-delivery/statewide-delivery-customer-service/.

The next meeting with STAT Courier will be on Monday, July 26. An update will be sent on Tuesday.


July 19, 2021

We recognize that some Statewide Delivery issues continue. Please be assured that we are doing everything we can to resolve delays as fast as possible. The following information is provided to help everyone ship and receive library materials as soon as possible.

We’ve been asked by library staff about seemingly conflicting information from drivers about their routes. A library that has 4 or 5 days a week delivery is on multiple routes. For example, if your library has deliveries Monday – Thursday then it may be on route 222a (Monday and Wednesday) and route 222b (Tuesday and Thursday). If a driver tells you that your library is not on his route for tomorrow, that may be because he is looking at route “a”, not route “b”.

The following guidelines were added today to the Statewide Delivery Handling and Shipping Guidelines information available to download and print on our website. The document may be found under the Delivery Resources tab on the Statewide Delivery webpage.

  • Do not zip tie a tote unless all items inside are going to one location.
  • Labels on sealed totes must be placed on the side of the tote to allow sorters and drivers to easily identify its destination.

And finally, it is vital that the correct labels are being used to prevent a further delay in the delivery of materials.


July 14, 2021

Read a Statewide Delivery update letter from Natasha Boekholt, President, STAT Courier Service, Inc


July 9, 2021

We know that every Ohio library sees customer service as a core value and prides themself on providing excellent service to their patrons. While a number of the challenges in our courier transition have been out of the control of the State Library, OhioLINK, and STAT Courier, we recognize that all of the challenges have been out of your control, too. We are working continuously to resolve these issues. We would like to thank the individuals who have reached out to the State Library & OhioLINK staff with kind words.

As the 6th day of our new contract comes to a close, the State Library of Ohio and OhioLINK are continuing to work with STAT to visit 100% of all locations. STAT, like every other employer in this economic climate, is struggling to hire new employees. This is not an issue unique to us, and the labor shortage is a factor for many industries. The global materials shortage has also impacted STAT. We told you on Wednesday that they had only received ⅔ of the totes they’d ordered. They received the last 1,500 totes this morning, two weeks after they were expected. Tote distribution should resume on Monday. As of today, STAT has visited 80% of the locations at least one time.

We would like to address the RFP process for statewide delivery specifically. As in the past, we worked with the Ohio Department of Administrative Services (DAS). As a statewide contract, the RFP process is one that we must regularly go through, and it is vital that the process be fair to all companies submitting proposals. The evaluation process for the proposals was included in the RFP document itself, and for this contract bids were evaluated across a variety of points that incorporated both their plan for service and the cost.

While no contracted service turnover is ever completely smooth, we remain confident that the increase in service you will see over the next month will lead to a positive end result. The last time the statewide delivery vendor changed, there were also issues and obstacles.

Some of the additional services that will be available as part of this contract include:

  • Dedicated routes that only deliver to libraries
  • Responsive service (e.g. additional routes)
  • Driver’s assigned appropriate transportation (e.g. no hatchbacks overflowing with library materials)
  • Driver check-in at every location to verify stops made
  • Utilization of totes to protect materials in transit
  • Additional hubs contracted

Though we have faced a number of obstacles that began in June, we are pleased to be partnering with a professional library delivery service company and anticipate exceptional service levels to be the standard going forward.

Positive steps that your library can take today:

  • Manage expectations by letting your patrons know that we are working through a courier transition and that they should expect delays in the statewide delivery of library materials. Consider using your library’s social media, website, newsletters, or email lists to distribute clear and concise messages.
  • Prepare appropriately professional and empathetic talking points for staff who are dealing with impatient, unhappy patrons.
  • Please use the Statewide Delivery Customer Service form to let us know if your library has not yet been visited by STAT Courier.
  • Be sure you are using the most up-to-date labels. All materials using the old Priority Dispatch labels are being shipped to the State Library of Ohio, and this will cause further delays in your deliveries.

Thank you all for your continued patience, and we will provide additional updates to you as we have them.


July 7, 2021

The State Library of Ohio and OhioLINK met with STAT Courier for a regularly scheduled update call this morning.  Today is the 4th day of the contract with STAT. We will continue to meet with key staff members throughout this transition and beyond. A major issue in this transition was due to scheduled stops Priority may have missed at the end of June.

STAT ordered 4,500 totes and there have been delays in STAT receiving them.  To date, they have only received 3000 totes. A shipment for the last 1500 is two weeks overdue. STAT is working to get those totes delivered ASAP.

The reduced number of totes at the onset, combined with the deliveries Priority missed in June have created a backlog of materials to be sorted at the warehouses. STAT is hiring more sorters this week and those sorters will be working over the weekend to address this backlog.

STAT will add two routes to the Cleveland hub and one in Toledo to address the volume in those areas.  With the addition of these routes, we will update delivery labels next week.

There has been some driver turnover, as is to be expected with any change in vendor and given the short time frame for the transition. However, drivers will be working all assigned routes as of tomorrow, including some recent hires starting their routes.

Steps libraries can take now:

  1. If you are at a library that a driver from STAT has not yet visited, please email Jamie Pardee (jpardee@library.ohio.gov) with the Subject line: NO DRIVER today. Or, you can use the Delivery Customer Service Form at https://library.ohio.gov/services-for-libraries/statewide-delivery/statewide-delivery-customer-service/.
  1. Please be sure you are using the most up-to-date labels. All materials using the labels for Priority are being shipped to the State Library of Ohio and will cause further delays.
  1. The statelibdelivery listserv for delivery is an opt-in listserv. Please be sure at least one person from every delivery location subscribes to this listserv at https://lists.library.ohio.gov/mailman/listinfo/statelibdelivery.

As with any major contract change, we expected to see some challenges as we transitioned vendors.  While we are working through these, we sincerely appreciate your patience and understanding. We apologize for problems that have been created for patrons, some of whom have been waiting for their materials for over four weeks. A significant increase in the materials delivered is expected starting on Monday to get through this backlog.

Another update with STAT will be Friday afternoon and we will share new information after that meeting. The fastest way to get these updates is to subscribe to the statelibdelivery listserv.


Revised June 24, 2021

The following information includes important dates and instructions as we transition to the new Statewide Delivery Service. If you have questions, contact Jamie Pardee.

June 25

Libraries must destroy all Priority Dispatch delivery labels.

June 28, 29, and 30 – Priority Dispatch

Priority Dispatch will only drop off materials.

Priority Dispatch will NOT pick up outgoing materials.

June 28 – STAT Courier

STAT Courier will visit every library who is a member of the Statewide Delivery Service. This process will begin on Monday, June 28. If a library does not receive delivery services on Mondays, they will meet their driver on their regularly scheduled delivery day.

The drivers will introduce themselves,

drop off totes to use for packing materials, and

start picking up outgoing materials

All routes may not be completed on the first 3 days due to the time it may take for drivers to introduce themselves to library staff, load the canvas bags into the totes, and drop off empty totes. We ask that libraries try to minimize questions for the STAT Courier drivers during the first couple of weeks of the new delivery service because we do not want to hold them up from completing their routes. Please communicate directly with Jamie Pardee or use the customer service form that will go to STAT Courier.

STAT purchased smaller sized totes to keep them at a manageable weight. The dimensions of the totes are 21.5″ x 15.5″ x 13″. The packed totes should not weigh more than 50 lbs. Given the size of the totes, STAT Courier expects that they will only be about 30-35 lbs.

Library staff shall pack totes with items going to multiple locations. STAT Courier staff will sort for delivery to each destination. If a library has a large amount of materials going to one location, they may put them directly into a single tote and affix the label to the tote rather than putting multiple bags into a tote.

The drivers will have 2-wheel hand trucks (which can fit 4 to 5 totes) and can convert to 4-wheel hand trucks/carts.

For the initial pick-up of materials, if a driver picks up 4 totes, they will leave 4 empty totes for the next pickup date.

Week of June 28

Libraries need to print new delivery labels for the STAT Courier system

July 5 – There will be no deliveries or pickups on July 5 because that is a holiday for STAT Courier.

Please continue to place library materials in the canvas bags then place the bags into the totes. This will enable the drivers to stack the totes in their vehicles and should help reduce incidences of damaged materials. Materials may be placed into a padded envelope with a label taped on it and then placed directly into the tote. No canvas bag is needed if using a padded envelope.

A Material Handling for Statewide Delivery information sheet is available to read, download, and print. NOTE: This document has been updated and is available under the Delivery Resources tab.

If you have questions, contact Jamie Pardee.